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Bill Would Restrict Cold Medicine Sales Nationally February 7, 2005 jointogether.org
The Combat Meth Act, cosponsored by Sen. Jim Talent (R-Mo.) and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), would require all drugs containing pseudoephedrine to be sold behind the counter at pharmacies, the Southeast Missourian reported Jan. 28.
The measure would place drugs containing pseudoephedrine, which can be used to make methamphetamine, in Schedule V of the Controlled Substances Act. The reclassification would mean that only pharmacists or their assistants could dispense the drug, although a prescription would not be required. Currently, drugs containing pseudoephedrine, such as Sudafed, are sold over the counter.
Drug sales would be limited to 6 grams per visit and 9 grams over a 30-day period. Proof of ID and a signature would be required to make a purchase. The bill is modeled, in part, on anti-meth legislation passed in Oklahoma.
Talent acknowledged that the measure would not halt the meth problem; much of the drug is manufactured in big clandestine labs in countries like Mexico. "But it will stop the mom and pop cooks who can't get pseudoephedrine out of Mexico, who can't hijack a truck," Talent said. "It takes about 600 tablets to make anything substantial and this will get the labs out of the neighborhoods."
Drug retailers are expected to oppose the federal legislation.